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Panorama
Read your comments
Panorama: Tackling Saddam, was broadcast on Sunday, 2 February at 2215 GMT on BBC One.

There is still time for Blair and Bush to listen and talk to their people

Richard Willmott, Channel Islands
It is obvious that the majority of peaceful, loving, liberal, intelligent and tolerant British people are against this war and only a small right-wing minority are for it, hell bent on raining 800 cruise missiles in two days on a third world country.
Ahmed, UK

War is not yet inevitable. There is still time for Blair and Bush to listen and talk to their people. One way of forcing them to take notice is by truly massive demonstrations. If one million people march in London on 15 February it might just possibly, make Blair pause for a moment. The Grosvenor Square protests in the 60s and the poll tax protests did in the end have an effect.
Richard Willmott, Channel Islands

Great programme. It merited a month's worth of licence fee all by itself. Andrew Marr and John Simpson are class acts, and Jane Corbin and Matt Frei measured up as well. It is programmes like this that underline the need for a credible public broadcasting service, free from political interference.
Richard Willmott, UK

I am concerned that if Saddam has weapons of mass destruction that the inspectors cannot find, he will use them if we invade his country to remove him from power. Do Bush and Blair really think that war worth the risk?
Don Hatton, Glastonbury

Isn't there a real danger that by invading Iraq, the Middle East will become completely destabilized, locking both America, its allies and the whole region into another situation similar to the one the Palestinians and the Israelis now seem to be stuck with?
Trevor Batten, Amsterdam, NL

Surely Bush and Blair have considered the after effects of the war?

Molly Jones, Coventry, England
Our allegiance should be to the United Nations and we should wait for them to decide what to do, not follow USA, otherwise politics and personalities can let things get out of hand.

I believe that Al Qaeda are Shiite Muslims, I know that Saddam Hussein is a Sunni Muslim and also that he hates and has persecuted the Shiite Muslims in Iraq, so where is the connection between him and Al-Qaeda?
Mary, South Wales

It was quite clear from the comments made by the correspondents on Panorama that they believe war is inevitable.

But only the reporter in Baghdad talked about the likely chaos that will ensue in that country when the war in Iraq is over.

My understanding is that there is not a unified opposition. So who will govern? Who will rebuild the country?

Surely Bush and Blair have considered the after effects of the war.

I can't see how such action would bring peace to this area or make the USA and ourselves feel more safe from terrorism
Molly Jones, Coventry, England

I'm confused as to why the UK, or indeed any country is going to war against Iraq.

The official reason for war is "weapons of mass destruction" which will pose an international threat.

If there is no clear evidence, which would be acceptable in a trial against Saddam and his country, then there should be no war.
Daniel Lee, London, UK

The criteria for a just war must be met

Findlay Turner, Scotland
People wonder why Israel or North Korea is not criticised and Iraq is.

The only answer is that both those countries have not used weapons of mass destruction against their people, neighbours or enemies.

Saddam has murdered hundreds of thousands of Iraqis with the use of his biological and chemical weapons.

Iraq will hopefully be liberated in the next few weeks and the established democracy shall set a great example for the neighbouring Arab countries. The only way to do so is an invasion of Iraq.
Ali B, London, UK

I have been a Christian all my life. I believe all other means of settlement must be exhausted before war. The criteria for a just war must be met and these have not yet been demonstrated.

Aggression - making the first move against a country is generally condemned. Yet, isn't that what we are guilty of, if we attack Iraq?
Robert Butterfield, Bangkok,Thailand

Comments about President Bush's fundamentalist Christian views did cause me to contemplate for the first time the possibility of a superpower falling into the hands of a religious fanatic.

Christian fanaticism has shown itself in history to be every bit as destructive as any other.

It is significant that the major denominations in the UK have indicated opposition to war in the absence of clear justification.
Findlay Turner, Scotland

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, while dreadful and tragic, is a localised conflict that does not threaten the west.

An Iraq armed with weapons of mass destruction and headed by a Saddam Hussein, on the other hand, very much threatens the West.

Yet many here would prefer to resolve a conflict that does not affect them at the expense of one that does.
Inna Tysoe, Sacramento, California, USA

This is all about re-election for Bush

Mary Clarke, East Sussex

Rather than waging war on an entire country, can we not extract Saddam Hussein from his country and deal with him as an individual? It may not be easy, but it would save many lives as opposed to all out war.
Gordon McDonald, England

How can we expect the Islamic world to accept Iraq's refusal to comply with UN Resolutions as justification for war, when the West has so clearly shown that Israel's similar non-compliance is acceptable?
Philip Hesketh, Reading

An attack on Iraq will clearly increase anti-West sentiment throughout the Muslim and Arab worlds, making terrorist attacks against the West much more likely.
Brian Cocks, England

I am in the R.A.F and have just been given 10 days notice to deploy for six months to the Gulf. Troops morale is at the lowest I have seen it. And with all our forces concentrating on the Gulf, have the government realised that they are soon going to have a major manpower problem in the forces soon, leaving this country open to attack from terrorists.
Marc Eowland, England

This is all about re-election for Bush. Thatcher saw the Falklands War as her salvation and Bush sees this as his escape from a dire economic situation which might result in his non-election.
Mary Clarke, Seaford, East Sussex

I find it extremely disturbing that Tony Blair, a man of reasonable intelligence and strong religious beliefs, should kick against public opinion to wage a war like this. If a man like Nelson Mandela stands up against war, Bush and Blair must listen.
Abou Jeng, Aberystwyth, Wales

The US and the UK should put their efforts into resolving the situation between the Israelis and the Palestinians, instead of attacking Iraq. This is the root of most of the problems between the west and the Middle East.
K Sidkir, Wadhurst, E Sussex

The even more important question is "How do we tackle George W Bush?"

Lars Jakt, Truro
I am extremely worried about the prospect of war with Iraq without UN approval (or even the support of some of our closest allies). The UN inspectors have proved their worth and must be allowed to complete their task. Military action may indeed be necessary at some later stage; but there is no immediate reason to attack, as Iraq does not appear to pose an imminent threat to our security.
Ralph Lovesy, London

If the US and UK agree that weapons of mass destruction are a bad thing, then should lead by example and get rid of their own. If Bush is committed to world peace, then he should disarm, rather than hold on to his own vast arsenal while expecting everyone else to use catapults and water pistols.
Joe Francis, High Wycombe

Why is it that none of the proponents of war have been made to account for the fact that Saddam was encouraged to develop and use these weapons, by the very same countries that now seek to depict him as a global threat?
David Mills, Builth Wells, Powys

Why Iraq? Why not Pakistan, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Algeria, Zimbabwe... All these countries either have weapons of mass destruction, appalling human rights records or harbour terrorists. The West sold Saddam the parts to make WMD, presumably with a view that they would be used against Iran.
Alison Wharton, Aberdeen

Tackling Saddam may be a difficult and important question, but in my mind the even more important question is "How do we tackle George W Bush?". Mr Bush is really looking forward to this war, imagining he will win glory for ever. He has not learnt anything from history. He and Ariel Sharon, are the most dangerous men in the world today. Some time ago George W Bush himself said that "We cannot allow bad leaders to have access to weapons of mass destruction". True. So what do we do with Mr Bush?
Lars Jakt, Truro

Saddam will be destroyed by his own people before long

Robert Pearson, England
It would be understandable to travel the world promoting peace, but Blair travels the world promoting war and bloodshed upon the Iraqi people. The notion that Iraq intends to attack the UK or the US is ridiculous; nor would Iraq attack Israel, which has its own weapons of mass destruction that could pulverise Iraq. The twin towers episode severely affected the mind of George Bush. His revenge is to drop bombs on innocent Iraqis. Who is next? North Korea and Iran?
Mr Bloomsbury, Chelmsford

While Britain and the US talk of Iraq defying international law, if they attack Iraq without a UN resolution, they will be in violation of international law themselves. Even the very presence of their war planes in Iraqi skies, and the threat of an attack by their military presence in the Gulf are acts of war as defined under international law.
Allen Hardy, Kidderminster, Worcs

The majority of public opinion is against a war because proof of weapons has not been found. We are told that proof exists via the use of satellite spying, phone taps and so on. But this evidence is not passed to the weapons inspectors. I think that if evidence was produced then public opinion might change.
K. J. Rickett, West Malling, Kent

If Saddam has weapons of mass destruction, he will use them against the forces lined up on his frontier as soon as he is attacked. We must continue the search, and attack him from afar. Withdraw troops and do not go to war with ground forces. Saddam will be destroyed by his own people before long.
Robert Pearson, England

The State of Israel has been ignoring UN resolutions since it was created

Tony Harris, Puckeridge, Herts

The MoD has admitted that Iraq's electricity sector, which provides the power for Iraq's water-treatment and sewage plants, may be a military target in an attack on Iraq. In 1991 the deliberate targeting of this sector led to a massive surge of water-borne and sewage related diseases such as cholera, typhoid, gastroenteritis and malaria, killing tens of thousands of children. Given that such attacks are not only grave violations of international humanitarian law but also, in the words of Save the Children Fund, "an attack on children's ability to survive" how can the British Government possibly justify its stance?
Andrea Needham, Hastings

Can anyone explain why we have to pay for war against Iraq on grounds that they have failed to adhere to UN resolutions? I do not recall voting for such an expense. Even if we had agreed to punish rogue states in this way, surely we should recognise that the State of Israel has been ignoring UN resolutions since it was created. Over the years Israel has stolen land by force and ignored all UN resolutions ordering them to retreat within the borders given to them in 1947.
Tony Harris, Puckeridge, Ware, Herts

This proposed war to get rid of Saddam is going to cause a major backlash against us. The West has sustained and armed him without any regard for the suffering he caused. The only crime in the West's eyes now is that he has oil.
Douglas Carnegie, Glasgow

How can the five main countries (USA, UK, Australia, Italy, Israel) that are campaigning for a war, preach about restoring democracy to Iraq? For example - Tony Blair is ignoring all opposition to war, and the head of state in the UK is hereditary. Silvio Berlusconi has almost has a monopoly on all media in Italy. Real democracy does not exist in any of these countries.
Zara Williams, Manchester

BBC Correspondents answer your questions on the Iraq crisis

Key stories

Experts questioned

Your comments

Analysis

IN DEPTH

MAPPING THE CONFLICT
Links to more Panorama stories are at the foot of the page.


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